Southport, NC – Officer John Michael Szendry was the first back-up on the scene after Darrell Wayne Maness killed Boiling Springs police officer Mitch Prince in January of 2005. Szendry was also fired on by Maness, but was uninjured.
After the murder, Szendry left the force on extended medical leave. Southport Chief of Police J.V. Dove says Szendry committed suicide in his home last Friday.
Dove nicknamed Szendry 'the Crusader' and described him as a committed officer before the night of Prince's murder.
"I'm going to sum it up by saying he was actually the second victim of Darrell Maness," Dove says. "And a lot of times, when officers are called upon to assist their citizens, we become victims ourselves."
Maness received the death penalty in April for the killing of officer Prince. The Southport police department currently employs 8 full time officers.